Probing lead acetate in solution using X-ray diffraction

Chris J. Benmore*, Zhenwei Gao, Luqing Wang, Xingkang Huang, Haihui Pu, Maria K.Y. Chan, Junhong Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


For the purpose of water purification involving toxic metal sensing and removal, high energy X-ray diffraction experiments have been performed on lead acetate Pb(Ac)2 solutions, liquid and amorphous glutathione disulfide (GSSG), and their mixtures. The data have been interpreted using Empirical Potential Structure Refinement and pair distribution function analysis. At the highest concentration of 1 M Pb(Ac)2 in water, the lead molecules are found to cluster and the second shell in the water structure becomes slightly more ordered as the water molecules become compressed. Liquid and amorphous GSSG are found to hydrogen bond primarily via OH-O interactions, while NH-O bonds are much more distorted. Aqueous solutions of Pb(Ac)2 + GSSG show the closest Pb-O (carboxyl) and Pb-N (amine) bonds both at a distance of 2.5 ± 0.1 Å at a concentration of 1 M Pb(Ac)2 in water. At 0.75 M Pb(Ac)2 in water, strong Pb-S bonds are found at a distance of 2.8 ± 0.1 Å. The implications for lead removal using capacitive deionization are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number123382
JournalJournal of Molecular Liquids
StatePublished - Dec 1 2023


  • Capacitive deionization
  • EPSR modeling
  • Lead acetate
  • Toxic metal removal
  • X-ray diffraction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Spectroscopy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Probing lead acetate in solution using X-ray diffraction'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this